Hail Clouds and the Sovereignty of God
As a farmer, I am always thankful to get through these spring months unscathed by the elements of the weather. From the time that our fruit is in bloom in February to the time that it is harvested in the summer, it is susceptible to many things outside our control. All sorts of weather can destroy a crop: freezing temperatures, hail, wind and late rains. On our crop insurance forms these are called “acts of God.” Do they have it right? What does the Bible say about the role of God in nature? Does Satan have power in nature? Are weather patterns and storms a matter of chance. Is this just the natural course of nature that is outside the control of God?
We see God in the book of Jonah cause the perfect storm and stop it in a moment. In Matthew 5:45, Jesus says, “For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” The creation design and the sustaining work of Christ is an act of common grace by God for all people and is part of a natural order that God has created and controls absolutely.
In the book of Job, the Lord allows Satan to test Job. Satan uses the power of nature to incur devastation on Job’s servants and sheep with fire from heaven (probably lightning). He also caused the wind to collapse the house of Job, killing his family. Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. Listen to Job’s words, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” Job rightly clung to God’s sovereignty. As John Piper comments, “There is more security and more relief and more hope and more support and more glorious truth in despising Satan’s hateful hand and looking straight past him to God for the cause and for His mercy.”
God, not Satan, is in control of our weather. The fact that God allowed Satan a hand in weather, causing harm to Job, does not mean that He allows Satan a hand on our weather. It would be futile to speculate about Satan’s role. It is God’s sovereign control that gives us peace and comfort, whatever weather may come upon us. Nothing is outside His control. Blessed be the name of the Lord.